The village of Zalissya is the first stop on a tour of the Chernobyl Exclusion Zone.
Despite being close to the edge of the exclusion zone, it was the first place in the area to be fully evacuated in May 1986.
Located at about 25km from the nuclear power plant, it was once a thriving village with 3,200 people living there.
I’ve put together a photo gallery of the abandoned buildings that we explored – the hospital, general store and school. Further away is the Palace of Culture that was used as barracks for soldiers cleaning up the reactor after the disaster.
We visited the hospital first, and it was complete with old medicine bottles that were still entact.
All the posters remained on the walls.
A chair for gynaecological inspections was left abandoned, surrounded by records and textbooks.
The bottles had clearly been artfully arranged by photographers as I found them like this.
Old ledgers with appointments in were left open.
Injection bottles were left on dusty shelves.
Unopened packets of medicine lay next to old ledgers.
We then looked at the old general store.
The general store still had furniture inside.
Then we visited the old school. It’s just the frame and park area that is left. The abandoned roundabout is very creepy.
One self-settler called Rozaliya Ivanivna returned to the village to see out her life. Nobody has returned to settle before or since her and the village is slowly disintegrating.